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Has there been any updates to the old 256 browser safe colors as of late? Also, do these standards apply to color in HTML -- or colors used both in HTML and images (gif & jpg) that appear on the internet. If anyone has any info, or can point me toward some good reference sites on this topic, that'd be most excellent!
And (as I tell myself about Netscape 4 users & advanced page layout as well) if someone's running a 256 color system, they must be getting used to a pretty ugly internet experience. ;)
Does this mean use whatever color I want?
THAT would be nice!
If you're working on a specific existing site, you could check the visitor logs to see what operating systems are visiting the site the most. If your Windows visitors are all using '98 and up, you should be OK.
Just don't forget your wiggle room ;) ...and don't shoot me if someone using an old computer emails you to tell you how ugly the site looks! It's never happened to me, but there's a first time for everything.
.. sounds like the browser statistics where in you may consider not designing for old browser or lower color settings.
I haven't restricted myself to the "web safe" palette for a very long time.
On a side note, if you do design for print, PANTONE has software called ColorWeb Pro 2.0 that will specify the closest RGB/HEX equivalent for their spot colors.
And, after just buying new chip sets and formula guides :(, the $40 price tag for the software was much welcomed.
I was using 32 bit millions of colors until I saw what my work looked like on the average monitor. Goodness!
I use browser safe colors in html and css, as other colors may render wildly different. Even grotesquely different. Netscape renders colors differently, too.
What I shoot for is that all the colors blend well. Yes, the shade may be darker or lighter on different systems, but that's fine. As long as it isn't an entirely different color altogether.
html/css friendly colors?
check what it looks like on thousands of colors.
I didn't realize this until I re-read your question, but there won't *be* any updates to the web safe palette.
Reason being, is that it's basically the lowest common denominator and everything else is an improvement from there and not subject to the same restrictions.
You see, that terminology refers to the 216 colors that both PCs and Macs will display the "same" and w/o dithering on 8 bit resolution (256 color mode). Even though the monitor/browser could display 256 colors at that bit depth, only 216 of those colors are shared by both PC and Mac, hence "safe" to use and be assured they won't shift or dither.
So, they won't add any colors to that palette because those systems will never be capable of displaying any more than 256 colors.
In other words, technology has moved forward to the point that most - and by my stats, the vast majority - of visitors have systems capable of displaying thousands or millions of colors, so there's no need to add anything to that palette, because the ONLY reason you'd be using it anyway is in order to accomodate the antiquated - no offense to anyone - machines.
It would be like saying - in this age of CDs and DVDs - that someone was planning on improving the 8-track; see what I mean?
Birdman is correct in what he said regarding Web graphics.
If you want to design using Web safe colors, just load a browser safe palette in your image editing or illustration program, use it to create your images, and then pick one of the colors from that palette to use for your HEX value for backgrounds or whatever, then you should be assured you're safe.
The "problem" comes in when you're trying to match Web colors and print colors.
As I was saying, I design my print items using the PANTONE CMS and picking the colors from swatch books. Then I use the software I mentioned to choose the closest RGB/HEX value.
That can be a headache sometimes because some of the colors just aren't reproducable online. Your monitor displays in RGB and you're trying to reproduce an actual specially mixed *ink* color; doesn't always work. It's akin to trying to paint the exact color of the green light on a traffic signal - you might get close, but you won't be able to duplicate it exactly.
Again, though, I really never pay all that much attention to the web safe palette; 99% of my visitors DON'T use 256 color mode, and like mivox said, those that do are used to ugly anyway. :)
Hope this makes sence
If it's true that you can do that, then you could use either RGB or HEX interchangeably, because all Web safe colors (all browser colors for that matter) have *both* an RGB value AND a HEX value - they're not two different things; or not mutually exclusive, should I say.
Take white for example. It's a web safe color and its RGB value is R255 G255 B255, while its HEX value is #FFFFFF. So if what birdman is saying is true, you could use either RGB or HEX to acheive the same result.
I still bear it in mind...it's not important for many desktops...but does still seem to matter for some handheld and mobile devices...since these are increasing in use it may be a while yet before it ceases to be important
The problem, I think, is that each platform and monitor calibration setting will slightly alter color rendering... what looks like a perfect match on a Mac default monitor won't match when you look at it on a default Windows machine, and vice versa... and how graphic colors are rendered seems to differ slightly from how html hex codes are interpreted.
Unless there's a workaround in CSS, I don't believe you can actually specify RGB numbers in the html code, can you? I thought you had to either use named colors or hex codes...
I haven't actually tried to exactly match colors between a GIF and the html background color in about three years, after I spent almost a week trying to match an exact color of tan between some navigation buttons and a background color.
It hasn't been much of a hindrance to my designs, so just working around the situation has been the easiest solution for me.
They range from 00-FF:hexidecimal (0-255:Decimal) for each giving you a range of 16,777,215 colours. If your eyes can see more colours than that, then you have eyesite that is well above average.
So if you convert your colour percentages to the range 0-255 by multiplying by 2.55 and then convert each R,G or B to hexidecimal and then type them in using the format RRGGBB, you have specified rgb(RR,GG,BB) in exactly the same way.
I have all three of their color posters.
browser safe is easy to recognize if you know the little trick - there are 216 browser safe colors:
6 Different R x 6 Different Green x 6 Different B=216
They all are:
So if you see
you know they are browser safe
anything that isn't a pair of those 6 characters is not.
I don't know how much it matters, but hey - the posters look cool...
However, in order to maintain graceful degradation into the "older" systems that are 800x600 and those tend to be 16bit. (these go back quite a few years) and are currently the standard for which we design for. I believe that you are safe designing in a 16bit color palate and encompass something like way over 90% of all users.
The old 216-websafe palette is a subset of the 8-bit palette, identified for browser and operating system compatibility. But the 15-bit and 16-bit palettes are not subsets of the 24-bit palette; they are entirely distinct palettes. So no matter which color you choose when you're designing (excluding black and white), you cannot choose a color that exists both in the 24-bit palette and in either the 15- or 16-bit palettes.
Death of the websafe color palette? [hotwired.lycos.com]
By the way, the 32-bit palette has the same number of colors as the 24-bit. The extra 8 bits are used for other purposes.
...just because you save an image as a GIF, it doesn't necessarily mean that all colors within that image file are web safe colors. It could contain one of the 40 colors outside the 216 web safe palette, for example.
This is more the case than you might think. Each cell in a GIF color table can map to ANY RGB color. Some editors have a "web snap" feature that nudges the RGB values closer to the less problematic colors.
But if you just choose 256 colors for a GIF, the odds are you won't get even ONE "websafe" color in the index.
I've found it's safest to create a small, one color GIF and tile it as a background image, in addition to declaring a bgcolor.
Then, whether you're in 16-bit or 24-bit, the color shift is usually the same for the image and the background - and there are no unsightly boxes around images. But if you just use a bgcolor, the particular system colors on some computers/browsers may throw you a curve ball.
You're also better off (with a GIF or PNG) to use a transparent background in the image. Then there is no "straight edge" to show off the color shift.
What I tend to do... and it hasn't got me into any trouble yet. I use any color I want in photoshop (this is usually done with a non lossy format graphic) and then I get the hex value from it using the eyedropper tool and pop in that hex value into my background in HTML.
That way, the anti-aliased edges of the image pick up the color of the page background (your fill/transparent color) and you don't have white jaggies around the image when it's used online.